Mar 22, 2011

2011 ALMS 12 Hours of Sebring RECAP

Physical, exhilarating, and grueling, all words that can aptly describe the prestigious 12 hours of Sebring and the 2011 reincarnation was no different. The fight was on from the drop of the green and never let up. If you missed any of the action be sure to catch the archived replay over at

In the GT category Team Corvette didn’t waste any time as the number 04, driven by Oliver Gavin at the time, pounced on the pole-winning Ferrari F430 GT to claim the lead on the first lap. “The Ferrari went wide and I got by him,” Gavin said. “Once the Ferrari’s tires came in, he started to catch me – any amount of dust on the track and our performance started to suffer. Then with new Michelins after the first pit stop, we were back in the hunt and could race anybody.”

However, all the fame belonged to BMW as they finished one and two in class. The victory was nothing short of hard-fought as six cars finished on the same lap and featured many compelling battles throughout the 12 hour event.

The Rahal BMW’s were brand new for Sebring, but still performed without a hitch allowing the team to mix it up without any serious mechanical hiccups. The win also gives rising star, Joey Hand, a victory at the Daytona 24 and now the 12 hours of Sebring all within the span of just a couple of months.

Joey Hand (Car number 56): “I came to Sebring with a really good feeling that we could win this – and now it really worked out. The victory belongs to everyone in BMW Team RLL. In the off-season the guys built two brand-new BMW M3 GT cars that worked well from the word go. I also want to say thank you to Dunlop. The tyres played an important part today and we had this advantage on our side.”

In LMP1 it was the Audi R15+ and HPD ARX-01 who began as the favorites, but it was Peugeot and Team ORECA Matmut who claimed the checkered flag. The factory Audi’s were plagued by mechanical issues and unfortunate accidents that proved too much for the team to overcome.

“It was a great race. Everything went very well,” Lapierre said. “The plan was to stay on the same lap until three or four hours into the race. Then we started to push. We were quite fortunate that the pace car didn’t come out anymore after we decided to push.”

Level 5 Motorsports won their debut in the LMP2 class, proving that the former LMPC champions will be just as competitive in their new home. “We just got our cars last Saturday. This whole week was a big test session,” said Tucker, who won the LMPC driver’s championship last year. “I’ve got to hand it to Luis and Ryan. We had a small issue and went down a bunch of laps, but these guys pounded it out. It really worked out for us today.”

Overall it was an exciting race and a fantastic start to the 2011 ALMS season.



1. (5) Nicolas Lapierre, France; Loic Duval; Olivier Panis, France; Peugeot 908 HDI FAP (1, LMP1), 332.
2. (7) David Brabham, Maidenhead; Marino Franchitti, Edinburgh, Scotland; Simon Pagenaud, Montmorrillon; HPD ARX-01e (2, LMP1), 332.
3. (1) Franck Montagny, Grandvaux; Stephane Sarrazin, Ales; Pedro Lamy, Lisbon; Peugeot 908 (3, LMP1), 332.
4. (4) Allan McNish, Monte Carlo; Dindo Capello, Canelli; Tom Kristensen, Monte Carlo; Audi R15+ TDI (4, LMP1), 327.
5. (2) Mike Rockenfeller, Monte Carlo; Timo Bernhard, Dittweiler; Romain Dumas, Ales; Audi R15+ TDI (5, LMP1), 326.
6. (10) Chris Dyson, Pleasant Valley, NY; Guy Smith, Bracken, Yorkshire; Jay Cochran, Palm Beach, FL; Lola B09 86/Mazda (6, LMP1), 324.
7. (8) Neel Jani; Jeroen Bleekemolen, Monte Carlo,  ; Nicolas Prost; Lola B10/60 Coupe (7, LMP1), 320.
8. (3) Alexander Wurz, Monte Carlo; Marc Gene, Barcelona; Anthony Davidson, Brackley, Northamptonshire; Peugeot 908 (8, LMP1), 315.
9. (12) Michael Guasch, Pleasant Hill, CA; Jens Petersen, Dusseldorf; Dane Cameron, Sonoma, CA; Oreca FLM09 (1, LMPC), 312.
10. (25) Dirk Mueller, Monte Carlo; Joey Hand, Sacramento, CA; Andy Priaulx; BMW M3 GT (1, GT), 312.
11. (13) Frankie Montecalvo, Highlands, NJ; Ryan Dalziel, Orlando, FL; Oreca FLM09 (2, LMPC), 312.
12. (24) Dirk Werner, Kissenbrück; Augusto Farfus; Bill Auberlen, Redondo Beach, CA; BMW M3 GT (2, GT), 312.
13. (30) Olivier Beretta, Monte Carlo; Tommy Milner, Leesburg, VA; Antonio Garcia, Barcelona; Chevrolet Corvette C6 ZR1 (3, GT), 312.
14. (23) Oliver Gavin, Yardley Hastings; Jan Magnussen, Roskilde; Richard Westbrook, London; Chevrolet Corvette C6 ZR1 (4, GT), 311.
15. (22) Gianmaria Bruni, Rome; Giancarlo Fisichella , Rome; Pierre Kaffer, Salenstein; Ferrari F430 (5, GT), 311.
16. (27) Joerg Bergmeister, Langenfield; Patrick Long, Bellaire, FL; Marc Lieb, Ludwigsburg; Porsche 911 GT3 RSR (6, GT), 310.
17. (52) Darren Law, Phoenix, AZ; Seth Neiman, San Francisco, CA; Marco Holzer; Porsche 911 GT3 RSR (7, GT), 306.
18. (14) Gunnar Jeannette, Salt Lake City, UT; Ricardo Gonzalez, Monterrey; Rudy Junco Jr., Monterrey; Oreca FLM09 (3, LMPC), 305.
19. (36) Tracy Krohn, Houston, TX; Nic Jonsson, Buford, GA; Michele Rugulo, Italy; Ferrari F430 GT (4, GTE-AM), 302.
20. (17) Luis Diaz, Mexico City; Scott Tucker, Leawood, KS; Ryan Hunter-Reay, Boca Raton, FL; Lola Honda (5, LMP2), 300.
21. (46) Damien Faulkner, Ireland; Sebastiaan Bleekemolen, Haarlem; Tim Pappas, Boston, MA; Porsche 911 GT3 Cup (1, GTC), 299.
22. (50) Duncan Ende, Los Angeles, CA; Spencer Pumpelly, Mason Neck, VA; Alain Li; Porsche 911 GT3 Cup (2, GTC), 299.
23. (56) Sean Edwards; Henrique Cisneros, Miami, FL; Carlos Kauffmann, Miami, FL; Porsche 911 GT3 Cup (3, GTC), 296.
24. (51) Nick Ham, Evergreen, CO; Carlos Kauffmann, Miami, FL; Sean Edwards; Porsche 911 GT3 Cup (4, GTC), 295.
25. (49) Dion von Moltke, Coral Gables, FL; Jim Norman, Tampa, FL; Peter Ludwig, New Paltz, NY; Porsche 911 GT3 Cup (5, GTC), 295.
26. (35) Boris Said, San Diego, CA; Andrea Robertson, Ray, MI; David Robertson, Ray, MI; Doran Ford GT/Elan (8, GT), 294.
27. (18) Christian Zugel, Holmdel, NJ; Eric Lux, Jacksonville, FL; Elton Julian, Santa Monica, CA; Oreca FLM09 (6, LMPC), 294.
28. (29) Jean-Denis Deletraz; Stephane Ortelli, Monte Carlo; Frederic Makowiecki; Ferrari F458 Italia (9, GT), 292.
29. (48) Peter Lesaffre, Rye, NH; Andrew Davis, Lilburn, GA; Bob Faieta, Tujunga, CA; Porsche 911 GT3 Cup (6, GTC), 291.
30. (11) Franck Mailleux, France; Lucas Ordonez, Spain; Soheil Ayari, Aix-les-Bains; Oreca 03 Nissan (7, LMP2), 290.
31. (21) Andrea Barlesi; Frédéric  Da Rocha, Paris; Patrice Lafargue, Nantes; Oak Pescarolo Judd (8, LMP2), 287.
32. (45) Craig Stanton, Long Beach, CA; Matthew Marsh, Welwyn; John Potter, Salt Lake City, UT; Porsche 911 GT3 Cup (9, GTC), 282.
33. (53) Christophe Bouchut, Paris; Joao Barbosa, Portugal; Scott Tucker, Leawood, KS; Lola Honda (10, LMP2), 280.
34. (44) Leh Keen, Dublin, GA; Brian Wong, Newport Beach, CA; Bill Sweedler, Westport, CT; Porsche 911 GT3 Cup (11, GTC), 279.
35. (28) Guy Cosmo, West Palm Beach, FL; Rob Bell, Northamptonshire; Ed Brown, Las Vegas, NV; Ferrari F458 Italia (10, GT), 268.
36. (26) Jaime Melo, Milan; Mika Salo, Monte Carlo; Toni Vilander, Kankaanpaa; Ferrari F458 Italia (11, GT), 266.
37. (34) Anthony Lazzaro, Atlanta, GA; Colin Braun, Ovalo, TX; David Murry, Atlanta, GA; Doran Ford GT (12, GT), 261.
38. (41) PJ Jones, Torrance, CA; Rocky Moran, Ladera Ranch, CA; Kenny Wilden, Burlington Ontario; Jaguar XKR (13, GT), 256.
39. (32) Richard Lietz, Ybbsitz; Christian Ried, Schoeneburg, Germany; Gianluca Roda, Como; Porsche 911 GT3 RSR (14, GTE-AM), 252.
40. (54) Jan-Dirk Lueders, Barrington Hills, IL; Anthony Nicolosi, Palm Beach, FL; Jarrett Boon, Phoenix, AZ; Oreca FLM09 (7, LMPC), 246.
41. (42) Bryce Miller, Summit, NJ; Sascha Maassen, Lontzen; Rene Rast, Minde; Porsche 911 GT3 RSR (15, GT), 231.
42. (43) Pierre Ehret, Tegernsee; Roger Wills, Timaru; Shaun Lynn; Ferrari F430 (16, GTE-AM), 226.
43. (9) Mattieu Lahaye; Guillaume Moreau; Pierre Ragues; Oak Pescarolo Judd (17, LMP1), 222.
44. (33) Bryan Sellers, Braselton, GA; Wolf Henzler, Nuertingen; Martin Ragginger, Austria; Porsche 911 GT3 RSR (18, GT), 220.
45. (19) Johnny Mowlem, London; Olivier Lombard, Poissy; Luca Moro, Amsterdam; Oreca FLM09 (8, LMPC), 203.
46. (15) Ryan Lewis, Indianapolis, IN; Henri Richard, Los Altos Hills, CA; Ken Dobson, Carmel Valley, CA; Oreca FLM09 (9, LMPC), 185.
47. (6) Greg Pickett, Crystal Bay, NV; Klaus Graf, Dornham; Lucas Luhr, Monte Carlo; AMR/ Lola Coupe B08 62 (10, LMP1), 151.
48. (16) Richard Hein; Jean-Francois Yvon, Le Mans; Jacques  Nicolet; Oak Pescarolo Judd (11, LMP1), 111.
49. (47) James Sofronas, Newport Beach, CA; Jan Seyffarth, Querfurt; Bret Curtis, Valencia, CA; Porsche 911 GT3 Cup (12, GTC), 87.
50. (20) Kyle Marcelli, Barrie, ON; Tomy Drissi, Los Angeles, CA; Rusty Mitchell, Midland, TX; Oreca FLM09 (12, LMPC), 86.
51. (31) Scott Sharp, Jupiter, FL; Johannes van Overbeek, San Francisco, CA; Dominik Farnbacher, Ansbach; Ferrari F458 Italia (19, GT), 49.
52. (40) Gabriele Gardal, Milan; Patrick Bornhauser; Julien Canal, Le Mans; Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 (20, GTE-AM), 37.
53. (38) Bruno Junqueira, Brazil; Oriol Servia, Beverly Hills, CA; Cristiano da Matta, Belo, Horizonte; Jaguar XKR (21, GT), 35.
54. (39) Ian James, Phoenix, AZ; Benjamin Leuenberger, Switzerland; Panoz Abruzzi (22, GT), 19.
55. (55) Nicky Pastorelli, Rijswijk; Dominik Schwager, Eisenhofen; Brett Sandberg; Lamborghini Gallardo LP560-4 (23, GT), 10.
56. (37) Fabien Giroix, Saint-Maur; Michael Wainwright; Roland Goethe; Aston Martin Vantage (24, GTE-AM), 5.


Quotes via Rahal and ALMS

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